Bahrain v Australia

Verbeek dismisses Australia's injury worries

November 18, 2008

Pim Verbeek has vowed Australia will go all-out for victory in their World Cup qualifier against Bahrain on Wednesday despite the absence of a number of key players through injury.

Blackburn duo Brett Emerton and Vince Grella are both absent with hamstring injuries while defender Craig Moore is out after having undergone cancer surgery.

Mark Milligan (heal), Matthew Spiranovic (ankle) and Scott Chipperfield (infection) are also injured while Scott McDonald will not play due to a virus.

Australia are top of Group One with six points from two games but lead Japan and Qatar by just two points and consequently Verbeek insists his side will not play it safe.

"We will go into the game aiming for a win as we will field the best players that we have although we have several injuries," said Verbeek. "We hope that we can have another good performance in the qualifiers.

"We had a completely different preparation than we had against Qatar because we have the team coming in at different times. Both training sessions were just recovery to see how many players we have available for the final 18."

Bahrain coach Milan Macala also has an understrength side to pick from as he looks to lead his side to their first victory in the group.

The Czech coach will be without the services of midfield trio Mohamed Salmeen, Abdulla Omar and Sayed Mahmood Jalal who received their second yellow cards in the qualifiers in the previous match against Qatar where defender Abdullah Al Marzooqi was sent off.

Striker Ismaeel Abdulatif is out with a foot injury while Rashed Al Allan damaged his ankle in national team training.

"We will fight to get the three points because a draw or a defeat will put us out of contention," said Macala. "We want to show the same fighting spirit that we showed against Qatar in the previous match when we managed to get back despite playing with one man down.

"We will miss several players in the game against Australia. However, we will be looking for another fighting performance which will show that we will not be affected by the absence of these players."